Air Astana, the national carrier of the Republic of Kazakhstan, will launch a low cost airline, FlyArystan, in the first half of 2019.
The new airline will operate a fleet of Airbus A320 aircraft configured to an all-economy class of 180 seats – a classic LCC model, strictly following the examples of airlines such as easyjet, Indigo, Cebu Pacific, and Air Asia.
Airfares will be approximately half of current Air Astana fares, and while the routes will initially be domestic focused, the airline is expected to expand onto regional international routes in the mid-term. FlyArystan will operate from multiple aircraft bases in Kazakhstan with routes and aircraft bases to be announced over the coming months.
FlyArystan’s management team will be led by Tim Jordan, a British-Australian national with more than 15 years’ senior LCC management experience at Cebu Pacific and Virgin Blue. Although FlyArystan will be a low cost airline, with very different service procedures to those of Air Astana, as a division of Air Astana the airline will maintain the same reliability and safety standards as Air Astana. All safety standards and regulatory processes to which Air Astana is subject, will automatically apply to FlyArystan.
“FlyArystan is the result of much serious thought and internal business planning, and comes as a result of a rapidly changing local and regional airline business environment,” said Peter Foster, President & CEO of Air Astana. “It will be good for the mid to long-term prospects of Air Astana, and we hope, very welcome to the Kazakhstan travelling public, who will be able to benefit from significantly cheaper airfares on domestic and regional routes.”
IMAGE:Peter Foster, President, Air Astana